Your vehicle uses brake fluid to assist in using the brakes since it allows you to gently put your foot on the brake pedal and have much more pressure applied to the brakes themselves. However, a vehicle can become low in brake fluid for a variety of different reasons, some of which will require having your car repaired. Here are the signs to look out for that can help identify a problem with your brake fluid.
You See The ABS Dashboard Light Turn On
There are a few reasons why the ABS dashboard light can be on, with low brake fluid being one of them. However, it is not the only reason for the warning light. It can also turn on if you have a wheel speed sensor that has gone bad or the ABS module is not working properly. Some vehicles even have the option to turn off the anti-lock braking system, and the dashboard light will remain on to remind you that it's off. Thankfully, a mechanic or auto shop can hook a computer up to your vehicle that reads the error code, which will tell you the exact reason for the light.
You Smell An Odor When Braking
Having low brake fluid has the potential to cause a burning odor when you apply pressure to the brakes. Brake fluid works by helping apply pressure to the rotor when you apply the brakes and then also assists in releasing that pressure as well. Low brake fluid can cause the rotor to become stuck and keep the brakes applied longer than they should, which can cause that burning odor that you are smelling.
You Notice The Brake Pedal Behaving Oddly
Does your brake pedal feel a bit spongy when you put your foot on it? This is when you can put pressure on the brake pedal, but it takes its time popping back up to its resting position as if you pushed down on a sponge that was wet. This is an issue caused by not having enough brake fluid since the pedal isn't getting the pressure it needs to push back into its normal position.
You Notice Leaking Brake Fluid
There are many different fluids that can leak from your vehicle, but they all look a bit different. Unfortunately, brake fluid can look a bit different based on how new it is. When the fluid is new, it should look like it has a slight tint of yellow to it. When the fluid is dirty, it can turn to a darker black or brown color. Noticing these fluids is a good reason to have your car inspected.
Visit an auto repair shop like Tony's Auto Air if you notice any issues.